Then Edmund Wilson refers to some of the responses of Marx and Engels to literature. Wilson says that it is wrong because the country which has produced the Leaves of Grass and Huckleberry Finn has no influence of Marxism they were created during their pioneering periods. Those who fail to realize this truth go wrong and are guilty of misinterpretation and misreading. Marxist thinkers argue that writers should use common language for the creation of literary work. In , he started a work on the Russian Revolution— To the Finland station. They loved great writers like Shakespeare and Goethe. Newer Post Older Post Home.

Lenin died, Trotsky was exiled. In other words, democratic values are not the monopolies of Marxism; they are a world-wide phenomenon in this age of the common man. Edmund Wilson opposes this view; he says that it is wrong because literature and art are peace time activities. Towards the conclusion, the author says that the democratic values—sympathy for the poor—is not the monopolies of Marxist alone. Relationship between Art and society Marxian principles.

But the new Marxist followers did not understand literature from this perspective. Newer Post Older Post Home. Relationship between Art and society Marxian principles. After telling everything about the Marxist literature, Edmund Wilson says that Marxism still remains as a great force in this world. He looked at proletarian dictatorship from the stand point of view. He regarded communism only a transitional phase which would ultimately lead to a universal culture.

Art and literature were degenerated into mere weapons of communist propaganda.

edmund wilsons essay marxism and literature summary

But all these critics responded artistically to art. The myth was maintained until the real Dos Passos started criticizing the events in Russia. Marxist thinkers, with the help of Trotsky try ane find Marxist elements in the great classical works of other countries.


UGC NET PLATFORM: Marxism and Literature : Edmund wilson

Great classical literary works are not created as examples of bourgeois decay but as medium of great educational value.

Lenin was an organizer and fighter. When this work was in progress, Wilson became disillusioned with Marxism as it was preached and practised under the dictatorship of Stalin.

edmund wilsons essay marxism and literature summary

Marxist thinkers argue that writers should use common language for the creation of literary work. While he wrote extensively on the relationship between political ideologies such as Marxism and Literature, he opposed any pre-formulated critical frameworks, or what he called “a process of lopping and distortion to make [the work] fit the Procrustes bed of a thesis.

Trotsky was exiled and Lenin died during this period. Marx and Engels They never furnished socio-economic formulas to furnish the validity of art. A great writer will never create any work on the basis of certain ideologies, it may unconsciously happen. Marxism can tell us nothing about the goodness or badness of art and literature. Its aesthetic appeal is subordinated to its pragmatic political value.

They believed in the Renaissance ideal of the complete man, the different aspects of man which accomplishes perfection through participation in varied activities.

So the works created in different countries have no elements of Marxism.

Edmund wilson’s essay marxism and literature summary

Trotsky did not encourage the idea of proletarian culture and proletarian literature. He had to combat with problems which had not bothered Marx and Engels. Marxist thinkers believe anc revolutionary and pre-Revolutionary periods are the most suitable time for the literary work. Wilson states that now Literature degenerated into mere journalism into mere tools of propaganda to be used nu the government for its own socio-economic purposes. Marx and Engels never considered art as a weapon of social change.


They believed in the renaissance ideal of complete man, of his many sidedness, of the perfection which is achieved by the participation in varied activities.

Edmund wilson’s essay marxism and literature summary

But they are weapons in the more general struggle of European man emerging from the middle ages, striving to understand his world and himself. In great works of art is much more implied than what is explicitly stated. The edmuns says that Lenin has tremendous administration for Tolstoy.

Marxists believe that a work of art written on the Marxist perspective is considered a good work and all other works are bad. According to Wilson, the democratization of literature was a process which started much earlier in the U.

Every department of intellectual life was corrupted…Thus Marxism in Russia has run itself into a blind alley. Lenin died, Trotsky was exiled. The confusion in the leftist camp is because they are unable to find out whether they want short range or long range literature.

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